Wednesday, 6 February 2013

So I Read Beast

A 250 word (or less) review of the Beast graphic novel
By Marian Churchland, Image Comics

Beast is a really good comic in a way that is different from most other comics I've read. The book tells the story of a young sculptor, Colette, who takes a too-good-to-be-true commission for the enigmatic and inhuman Beast. It's an emotionally taut and furiously focused story about creativity and obsession and the way our passions can take over our lives. As someone who gets way too caught up in his hobbies and career sometimes, this aspect of the story really resonates with me. It’s a great story told with intense empathy and a kind of beautiful simplicity. Churchland's artwork is.... I want to call it very "illustrated", in the kind of traditional drawing sense instead of a more modern digital cartooning or super-photo-realism sense. The artwork in this book is sumptuous and unique and more like something you'd see in an art exhibit or antique book than a mainstream comic and this really benefits Beast’s unique voice. The art is also pretty great in that it clearly draws inspiration from locations in my home city of Vancouver: the off the beaten track, non-touristy parts; which is pretty cool. The super personal focus of the book and the beautiful but atypical art just gives Beast a unique and interesting voice. Read it and maybe it will speak to you. It certainly spoke to me.

Word count: 222

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